Lady Britomart: Snob with a Heart of Gold.
Whether it be using religion to further romance, questioning the morality of creating weapons of destruction or marrying someone out of necessity rather than out of love, the primary characters found in George Bernard Shaw'sMajor Barbara, suffer at the hands of their weak convictions. Throughout the course of Shaw's influential play, only one character displays a truly strong will, Lady Britomart, the outspoken family matriarch who "tells it like it is" in an attempt to ensure her chidren's well being, in a sexist world where she feels she has little control outside of the home. As the play begins, Lady Britomart's displays a rather abrasive personality which might cause many viewers to dislike her, but as Major Barbara comes to a close, Lady Britomart is the only character, who doesn't betray her own beliefs in the face of Andrew Undershaft's "wickedness".
Lady Britomart is one of the first characters the viewer meets when watching Major Barbara,
and from the very beginning there is no doubt that she is a woman with a strong will, whose opinion is both feared and respected by her son Stephen. The respect Stephen has for his mother, is so extreme that it makes him subservient towards her, causing Lady Britomart to confront her son about taking more responsibility over his life and the future of the family, so he will be able to make a steady income without her support. "You must learn to face life seriously, Stephen. I really cannot bear the whole burden of our family affairs any longer. You must advise me :you must assume the responsibility" (Pg. 52) . Through these exchanges with her son, it becomes apparent to the viewer that Lady Britomart is a woman who cares deeply...